Consider this wedding album 101. Learn about your options and how to turn your photos into a beautiful heirloom.
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Your photographer should be able to give you suggestions for wedding albums (or offer to create one for you!), but if they didn't or if you waited too long to order, you might be wondering what other choices are available to you. Since we firmly believe all wedding photos deserve to be transformed into an heirloom you can appreciate for years to come, we rounded up our favorite—and most trusted—sources for turning your favorite big-day pictures into an album. From the most hands-off (therefore, most expensive) to the most hands-on (and most affordable), we found the best albums on the market.
No matter your printing method or the formality of your wedding photo album, you should aim to order your book within six months of the celebration when your emotions are still fresh, but you're far enough removed to be critical of which selects should make the final cut. We can't tell you how many couples postpone creating a wedding album so long that they ultimately never get around to it. After all of the planning that went into the big day and all of the fun that was had at the reception, it's important to cull your favorite snapshots together in a way that beautifully commemorates the occasion. While you're at it, consider creating albums for both sets of parents, which make for wonderful gifts.
Familiarize yourself with common printing methods and binding techniques before signing any dotted lines with your photographer, or at the very least, ask to see samples. Otherwise, you might be disappointed with the quality or style of the finished product. If you find yourself feeling some sticker shock, remember that you're creating a custom keepsake that will last for years to come, and that's truly priceless. If you opt to do it yourself, there are a handful of great resources with numerous offerings to choose from. Click through to see our favorite sources for wedding albums—most of which you can easily order online.
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Your Wedding Photographer
Before you write off your photographer's professional wedding album outright, see if he or she offers different pricing options. Then, consider the benefits of a professionally-designed book. While the tab can reach upward of $1,500, the end result is worth it, says New York–based photographer Christian Oth: "It's an heirloom that will be passed down, and a pro knows how to create an outstanding visual story, from aligning margins and spacing to retouching and tweaking the layout." It's also the easiest, quickest way to get a gorgeous album. For an idea of how your pro-designed wedding album might look, click through samples on the following album companies' websites, like Priscilla Foster (shown) and Heirloom Bindery. Top wedding photographers often source books from these companies—some of which don't offer direct-to-consumer options, which means that to get a final product from them you've got to go through your photographer.
Photography: KT Merry3 of 14
Priscilla Foster Handmade
Many of the industry's top wedding photographers work with Priscilla Foster Handmade when creating personalized wedding albums. With dozens of cover options to choose from (including silk, leather, and velvet) and eight different album formats, nothing is pre-made or mass produced. Should you not see something you want, they'll likely be able to accommodate your special request.
Priscilla Foster Handmade Photo Albums, price available upon request, priscillafoster.com.
Photography: Jen Huang Photography4 of 14
California-based Heirloom Bindery offers couples and photographers alike high-quality wedding albums with linen covers. Their most popular book size is 12" x 14," but they offer five other options. All of their pages are made of cotton paper, you can foil-stamp the cover using custom artwork or text, and, should you need some help, they offer full design services, too.
Heirloom Bindery Albums, from $1,750, heirloombindery.com.
Photography: Courtesy of Mixbook5 of 14
With eight different album sizes, seven cover styles, and three paper options, you'll be able to find exactly what you want from Mixbook. Choose from hundreds of customizable album designs or create one from scratch. Once you've placed your order, you can expect your finished album to arrive as quickly as one week later.
Mixbook Photo Books, from $15.99, mixbook.com.
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Photography: Courtesy of Artsy Couture6 of 14
You don't need to have design experience to create an album with Artsy Couture. Their website has the tools to get you through the process with ease. Their most popular product, the 12"x12" gold leather wedding album, couldn't be easier to create.
Artsy Couture Photo Albums, from $155, artsycouture.com.
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With everything from a basic coffee table book to a high-end flat-lay album, Mpix offers a wide range of wedding-worthy products, including soft cover and an optional dust jacket. The company prides themselves on their fast turnaround (just one to two business days!), so their albums make for a great last-minute gift. But know that even though it's a quick process, each of your photos is reviewed by a color technician before hitting the printer.
Mpix Photo Books, from $39.99, mpix.com.
Photography: Courtesy of Artifact Uprising8 of 14
Artifact Uprising was founded on the belief that life's moments should be honored in print. Their premium lay-flat photo album is an heirloom in the making, though there are several other options, including a small square album for everyday viewing. If you need help with design, you'll be pleased to know that the company offers design service that helps newlyweds create the perfect wedding album.
Artifact Uprising Layflat Album, from $139, artifactuprising.com.
Photography: Courtesy of Blurb, Inc.9 of 14
Photo books from Blurb go from small and simple to grand and luxurious thanks to five sizes, six paper types, and three cover options. Their lay-flat books can accommodate up to 110 pages, which you can design using their free tools or sync up to Adobe InDesign with a plug-in.
Blurb Photo Books, from $14.99, blurb.com.
Photography: Courtesy of AdoramaPix10 of 14
AdoramaPix offers the same high-quality wedding albums to both photographers and their couples. Handcrafted in Brooklyn, all three of their styles offer lay-flat binding, sturdy pages made from one of seven paper types, and archival boxes to protect the memories inside.
AdoramaPix Wedding Albums, from $112, adoramapix.com.
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The professional-quality flush mount albums and photo books from Shutterfly are made from premium materials—like genuine leather, acrylic covers, and metallic accents—at a typical price point. Customers pay an average of $400 for a deluxe album, which comes with the assistance of an in-house design expert to help you curate the photos to tell your story.
Shutterfly Albums, from $375, shutterfly.com.
Photography: Courtesy of Tweed Wolf12 of 14
All of Tweed Wolf's photo albums include design services in their pricing, which means you can count on the pros to help you from start to finish. They'll send you a proof, you'll make as many revisions as necessary, and then they'll print, bind, and ship your hardcover wedding album to you, your parents, or anyone else who wants a collection of the day's best pictures.
Tweed Wolf Wedding Albums, from $295, tweedwolf.com.
Photography: Courtesy of Papier13 of 14
Papier offers photo books in a variety of different shapes and sizes, and they have both hardcover and softcover albums, too. Once you design your wedding photo album, you'll receive it just a few days later. But with so many different options for features like fonts and layout, take your time to ensure you'll get the book that properly commemorates your wedding—even if you opt for their most minimal design.
Papier Photo Books, from at $27.99, papier.com.
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Though Velvet Raptor first started out as a company that worked directly with photographers, they now sell most of their wedding albums directly to brides and grooms. The books are blank and you'll fill each one up by adding in prints. Think of it as a wedding scrapbook you'll cherish forever.
Velvet Raptor Photo Albums, from $180, velvetraptor.com.